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MARK AUSTIN THOMAS: America lost about eight CEOs a day in September. Yesterday alone there were three high-profile departures. Despite CEO’s big salaries a new study has some surprising information. It says when it comes to job insecurity the “big dogs” suffer just like the rank-and-file. Here’s Marketplace’s Steve Tripoli.
STEVE TRIPOLI: Figures for the year so far promise to make 2006 a high mark for executive dumping.
John Challenger of the Challenger, Gray and Christmas outplacement firm says the once-imperial CEO is feeling the heat.
JOHN CHALLENGER:“CEOs are under intense pressure from much more activist boards, shareholders who second-guess their decisions. . .”
Then there are legal woes. A lot of CEOs are losing their jobs to recent scandals about back-dating stock options.
The revolving door means a new and different crop of candidates. Leslie Gaines-Ross watches executive image-making at Weber Shandwick Worldwide.
LESLIE GAINES-ROSS:“Hopefully they’ll be more seasoned and groomed and experienced and prepared for the public spotlight.”
But John Challenger says incoming execs need more than polish.
CHALLENGER:“The new CEO really does need to have a spotless record, not only of success but ethical success.”
In the meantime sudden departures have many boards scrambling. Challenger says the confusion could show in companies’ bottom lines.
I’m Steve Tripoli for Marketplace.
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